The Para-Taekwondo Governing Board will be chaired by Koos Engelbrecht who formerly was the chairman of the WTF Para-Taekwondo Committee that successfully bid for the inclusion on the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic programme.
Mongolia and Iran shared the spoils at the inaugural men’s Asian Para-Taekwondo Championships, claiming two gold medals each in Taipei City.
Fifth Para-Taekwondo World Championships completed in the Russian capital – Moscow. It was attended by a record number of athletes with disabilities – 121 participants from 40 countries. Kazakhstani sportsmen participated in the championship for the first time. A delegation of five people flew to Moscow with the support of Kazakhstan Taekwondo Federation (WTF). Two of them were athletes.
The hosts brought a solid 26-strong contingent to the Championships, the second to take place in Russia after St Petersburg in 2010, and reaped the rewards inside a venue built to host handball during the 1980 Olympics as their men’s team recorded three gold medals, three silver and four bronze for 71 points.
They finished ahead of an impressive Iranian team, which sealed two gold and a silver, and an equally successful Turkish team which will travel home with two gold and a bronze.
Completing the top five was Azerbaijan and Mongolia.
The Azerbaijani’s secured a gold and a bronze and the Mongolian’s a gold and a silver.
Due to numbers of athletes proving a factor in the results, it was the Azeri’s who claimed fourth spot, with Spain in fifth.
Russian team coach Efremov Alexander told insidethegames that he was “extremely proud” with his team, adding, “every year we have harder and harder opponents so medals are very hard to win.”
Alexander, who was also named best male coach for the Championships by the World Taekwondo Federation, added: “Because of this, every medal we win makes me very proud of our country and our athletes.”
The women’s competition saw a jubilant Turkish team take top honours over Russia.
Adding to their medals in the men’s division, Turkey’s women won two gold and two bronze to gain their place at top of the podium.
The Russian women were biting at their heels the whole way as their gold, three silver and bronze placed them second in the competition.
Ukraine, led by triple world champion Viktoriia Marchuk, completed the women’s podium in third after Marchuk’s gold was joined by a single bronze to give them 12 points, one ahead of Denmark in fourth.
Turkey’s head coach Zehra Türüdü Örkan, who claimed the honour for best female coach, said: “We have worked hard for these Championships and this is a result of our work.
“So we are very proud and happy with the results and hope to continue being successful in the future.”
As well as a Championships designed for competitive competition, the event also awarded nations who displayed a good fighting spirit across the two-days.
On the men’s side, this award was handed to the Moroccan team who, not only proved a great success on the mat, but also provided the spirit, enthusiasm and kindness of it.
The Moroccan team were attending their first World Championships following funding and communication issues in previous years and were a key part of the Opening Ceremony as they performed an incredible demonstration of athletic capabilities in a unique and adaptive way for persons with a disability.
The female equivalent to this award was won by Lesotho after an incredible success for under 49 kilogramme athlete Masole Pitso in the women’s K42 classification.
Ukraine’s Viktoriia Marchuk and Mongolia’s Bolor-Erdene Ganbat were named best female and male competitors at the Championships in Moscow ©ITGUkraine’s Viktoriia Marchuk and Mongolia’s Bolor-Erdene Ganbat were named best female and male competitors at the Championships in Moscow ©ITG
Ukraine’s Marchuk, who secured her third world title in the women’s K43 under 49kg category, was named female athlete of the tournament as she continues to display the tenacity and drive that is hoped will gain taekwondo a spot on the Paralympic programme at Tokyo 2020.
After receiving the award, Marchuk told insidethegames that it was “the biggest thing to win at the World Championships.”
When asked for her opinion on the competition she added plainly: “If these Championships were not good, I would not come.”
The three-time world champion, who has won in each of the Championships she has competed in, also expressed her desire for the sort to make it into the Paralympic programme, stating: “I dream about coming into the Paralympic Games.
“I want to win medals all over the world.”
The best male athlete awarded was handed to Mongolia’s Bolor-Erdene Ganbat, the winner of the men’s K44 -61kg division.
In terms of officials, Australia’s Maher Mgableh, Morocco’s Tarik Benradi and Jordan’s Haya Qubain-Kara were selected as best referees of the Championships.
By David Kiue
David Kiue is a Kocosports Original, combat sports news reporter, huge WWE & BJ Penn fan, grew up in Hawaii and now lives in Tokyo Japan.
WTF Para-Taekwondo Committee chair “quite positive” sport will be included at Tokyo 2020
The World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) is quietly confident the sport will be added to the Paralympic programme at Tokyo 2020, it was claimed here today.
Speaking at a press conference ahead of the 5th WTF World Para-Taekwondo Championships in WTF Para-Taekwondo Committee chairman Koos Engelbrecht revealed he was looking forward to the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) decision in Berlin in October.
He was “quite positive” that taekwondo would be chosen ahead of its only rival, badminton, he claimed
Engelbrecht added: “We have to wait until the IPC’s final decision, but we are quite positive that taekwondo will be on the official programme of the 2020 Paralympic Games.”
Engelbrecht was joined at the conference, held at the headquarters of ITAR-TASS, by WTF secretary general Jean Marie-Ayer, Russian Paralympic Committee vice-president Pavel Rozhkov and Anatoly Terekhov, President of the Russian Taekwondo Union.
More than 120 athletes from 40 countries are set to take part in the World Championships at the Dinamo Sport Palace in Krylatskoe, Moscow, on Saturday and Sunday (June 21 and 22).
The Championships will be the second held in Moscow since its inauguration in Baku in 2009.
The Russian Taekwondo Union hosted the 2nd World Para-Taekwondo Championships in St Petersburg in 2010, an event which attracted a total of 65 athletes from 21 countries.
This edition of the Championships will feature both kyorugi and poomsae competitions and mark the first time that it incorporate poomsae competitions for intellectually impaired athletes.
“It is the second time for Russia to host the WTF World Para-Taekwondo Championships,” said Terekhon.
“This time we organise the Championship separately as it is so important before the IPC’s decision.
“My dream now is to put taekwondo on the 2020 Paralympic programme.”
Ayer added: “The Moscow event has a special meaning as the WTF has applied for being part of the 2020 Paralympic programme.
“The WTF is going all out to meet IPC-set requirements.
“Our vision is to keep developing taekwondo and provide opportunities for all.”
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